Friday, April 24, 2009

CNCMI has selected the compact DMC-2153 five-axis Ethernet motion controller from Galil Motion Control to ensure precision and speed of its VLF waterjet cutters. CNC Machines International's (CNCMI) VLF series is a high-performance waterjet cutter that can precisely cut and inlay intricate logos into carpet and turf. A representative from CNCMI said: 'Waterjet cutters like our VLF system need to keep the water stream tangent to the material for precise cuts.

'This rotary water axis must be kept tangent to the XY motion at all times. 'A unique feature of the machine is that it allows a bevel cut to be specified up to 45 degrees. 'Bevel cutting is useful in carpet cutting when fitting a logo cutout into the base. 'A straight-edge cut would allow the logo to fall straight through the base material.' The DMC-2153 easily handles the motion required by the application: the XY axes control the linear and circular patterns (rack and pinion), the Z-axis controls the height of the water jet and the Y-axis controls two motors for gantry function.

The fifth or rotary axis controls the motion of the water jet stream by keeping it in tangent to the XY motion to maintain precision cutting. In addition to tangential motion, the DMC-2153 handles constant velocity, slaving and linear and circular interpolation. As is common with computer numerical control (CNC) machines, the VLF reads G-codes to enact motion. To accommodate this, CNCMI specified the Mach3 graphical user interface from Artsoft to translate the G-codes into motion commands for the Galil controller.

The software performs all calculations for precise control of up to six simultaneous axes using a trajectory planner that feeds the Galil controller a series of linear interpolation commands that are 4msec apart. The Mach3 software also comes with ready-made drivers for Galil controllers, which reduce set-up time.

There have been reports circulating recently stating that EnSolv is to be banned in Europe because of its ozone depletion potential (ODP). However, this is not true; as part of its continuing commitment to the Montreal Protocol process, the European Parliament monitors known and potential ozone depleting substances used in refrigeration, fumigation and solvent-cleaning processes to ensure that the European Union meets its international responsibilities.

As a result of the rapid increase in usage of EnSolv for vapour degreasing, the use of the main constituent, n-Propyl Bromide (nPB), will, in future, be monitored but not restricted or banned. Volatile halogenated compounds are the substances that most affect the ozone layer. Compounds containing fluorine, in particular, are under constant review as flourine is the most reactive of the halogens.

The original fluorocarbons, CFC R11 and 113, sold in Europe as Freon and Arklone, were used as refrigerants, aerosol propellants and cleaning solvents and were the original reasons for ozone depletion; they were phased out of use during the 1970s and 1980s, allowing the ozone layer to slowly recover. Many others have been restricted and banned since this time, the most recent, used for cleaning, being HCFC 141b. When it was first introduced, it was assumed to be an acceptable replacement.

However, further work over the following years established that it, too, was depleting the ozone layer and it was banned, together with other fluorine-based liquids used in refrigeration and air conditioning (the 'F' gases). Now, new fluorine compounds and blends are being offered as alternatives for cleaning, such as HFEs and HFCs, and only time will tell whether these will also cause problems with ozone depletion and global warming. EnSolv, a patented stabilised nPB-based formulation, is the drop-in substitute for the carcinogen trichloroethylene in vapour degreasing.

This process is used throughout the manufacturing industry as it offers many advantages when compared to alternative technologies such as water cleaning. First, EnSolv is very fast, with a cycle time of three to five minutes and comparative water cleaning cycles of 30 to 60 minutes. It also carries out eight to 10 loads per hour compared to water cleaning cycles of one to two per hour. Additionally, it is said to be energy efficient, using only 50 per cent of the energy requirements of aqueous systems with savings in C02 emissions.

Solvent cleaning with EnSolv - when all the factors are considered - is claimed to be more economical in terms of money and its effects on the environment. Vapour degreasing with fluorocarbon solvents is unsatisfactory as a result of their low vapour temperatures. EnSolv, however, is said to offer better levels of vapour cleaning. With a boiling point of 70C, EnSolv allows parts that do not corrode in storage to be handled immediately. Very little monitoring is needed as the stabiliser system, patented worldwide, is self regulating.

Sales of EnSolv have grown rapidly over the past two years, which is why the European Commission has to monitor the increased consumption. As with many other substances, nPB is under constant review by the UN Environmental Panel (EP) to ensure that it is not affecting the ozone layer. The UN EP and the US EPA asked for a 3D study on the effects of very short-lived halogenated compounds from Prof Don Weubbles: the originator of ODPs. This report, which is due for publication soon, will provide comparative ODPs for nPB and other commonly used halogenated solvents. Until now, this has not been possible as a result of the difficulties of comparing different atmospheric models.

The report will, subject to the editor's agreement, be published following peer review and demonstrates that nPB will have a minimal impact on the ozone layer and that it is no cause for concern. As nPB is a suitable drop-in replacement for the other solvents used in vapour degreasing, it has been the subject of innumerable studies for its environmental and toxicological effects. It is not considered by any of the international agencies as a carcinogen and, in many parts of the world, it is becoming the solvent of choice for managements that do not wish to expose their workforces to carcinogens. However, it has been incorrectly classified as a Category 2 reproductive toxin in Europe.

The manufacturers of EnSolv have been challenging the European Commission for the last five years to justify their actions in court. The UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has to implement and enforce this classification and a judicial review has been requested, which has now been suspended by mutual agreement until the European Court of Justice (ECJ) has made a judgement. Judges in Belgium have also asked the ECJ for a ruling on the classification, which should be forthcoming in the near future. Envirotech, a manufacturing company, has self classified EnSolv as non-flammable and R20 harmful by inhalation; it expects this to be confirmed by the court when a judgement is made.

Sierra Instruments has released the Compod, its new programmable control module. The Compod, when coupled with Sierra's Smart-Trak mass flow meters (MFMs) and controllers (MFCs), simplifies basic flow-control installations and permits networking of multiple instruments using open-source Modbus RTU protocol. Adding the Compod module to a new or existing Smart-Trak MFM or MFC allows end users to take complete control.

Two digital outputs and one analogue input can be configured by the end user for a variety of process controls, including: gas mixing and blending; gas-ratio control; simple batch processes; triggering alarms; starting or stopping gas-flows automatically under user-defined conditions; and gas-flow totalisation.

Compod also monitors the functionality of the mass flow meter or controller and includes diagnostics, notifying users of faults or system updates. The Compod mounts to any Sierra Smart-Trak 100 Series, converting the instruments' internal RS-232 communications into multi-drop RS-485/Modbus RTU.

Modbus allows multiple instruments to be daisy-chained over a single network. When used with a PLC or master computer, each instrument equipped with Compod becomes a node on the Modbus network, capable of sending and receiving data and commands. Even complex process-control systems can be automated with the power of Compod and Sierra's Smart-Trak 100 Series.

SymCom MotorSaver Model 202 is an auto-ranging voltage monitor designed to protect three-phase motors regardless of size. It is used on 190-480 VAC, 50 to 60 Hz motors to prevent damage caused by single phasing, low voltage, high voltage, phase reversal, or voltage unbalance. A unique microcontroller-based voltage and phase sensing circuit constantly monitors the three phase voltages to detect harmful power line conditions.

When a harmful condition is detected, the MotorSaver's output relay is deactivated after a trip delay. The output relay reactivates after power line conditions return to an acceptable level for the selected amount of time (Restart Delay). The trip delay prevents nuisance tripping due to rapidly fluctuating power line conditions.

Note: To obtain UL listing for the MS202, use insulated 1/4" UL recognized female quick connects.

Features:
  • Compact design saves precious panel space.
  • 0.25" hole allows easy OEM mounting.
  • Diagnostic bicolor LED indicator light is green in normal conditions, red during trip conditions, blinking green while in restart delay mode and blinking red when reverse phased.
  • Universal range from 190-480 VAC 50/60 Hz provides the versatility needed to handle global applications.
  • Transient protected to meet IEC 1000-4-5,±4kv.
  • Detects single phase conditions regardless of regenerated voltages.
Protects 3-Phase motors from:
  • Loss of any phase (single phasing)
  • High and low voltage
  • Voltage unbalance
  • Phase reversal
Standard Features:
  • UL and cUL recognized
  • 5 year warranty
  • Made in USA
  • Manual, 2-300 sec. variable restart delay
  • Mounts on panel surface

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Fabtech International and AWS Welding Show, including Metalform, co-sponsored by the FMA, will take place in Chicago's McCormick Place from November 15-18.

The event will feature metal fabricating, forming, tube and pipe, stamping, thermal spraying, laser and welding technologies. In addition to the exhibits, the show will host over 100 technical and non-technical educational sessions and a number of events available to all attendees.

Rofin-Sinar Laser has announced the FL series of high-power fibre lasers. The FL series offers two models; the FL x75 and FL 010, with output powers of 750 and 1,000W respectively. The series has high beam quality and can be coupled in fibre optics with diameters of 50um up to 600um. This is equivalent to beam qualities of 2.5 to 30mm x mrad. The Rofin FL 010 S offers a fibre laser option with single-mode beam quality of typically 0.4mm x mrad and 1,000W output power.

The Rofin FL series is suitable for a wide range of applications. Small parts can be welded with low thermal distortion and minimal heat-affected zones, and steel or aluminium can be joined with welding depths of several millimetres. The high beam quality allows the efficient use of 'dynamic beam' scanner systems, allowing 2D and 3D geometries to be processed.

Optional beam switch and energy share modules provide the greatest use of the beam source. A single laser can be used in up to four individual work cells. These features support increased cycle times and productivity while minimising capital equipment costs. FL lasers are easily integrated into new and existing production workcells. The lasers of the FL series are designed for low-maintenance operation and long-term performance.

Unlike other concepts, where the laser beam changes repeatedly between air and the laser active medium, the beam of a fibre laser does not leave the fibre optics before the 1 processing optics (single-mode) or the beam switch (multi-mode). This 'all-in-glass' technology reduces the risk of optical contamination and eliminates changes in beam quality. The FL series will be presented at the Laser fair in Munich from 15-18 June 2009.

Lion Precision's spindle error analyser (SEA) uses non-contact probes to measure spindle error in three axes while at full operating speed. The software analyses the data and presents results in linear and polar plots, as well as calculated values of error motion. A software release (SEA 8.4) streamlines some of the tool's most used features.

The complex relationships between data acquisition sample rate, rev/min, and number of samples per revolution have been simplified for the operator in the analysis configuration window. The window provides a visual indicator of the effects of the current settings on processor load and system response. Automation has been improved, with automatically incrementing file names for sequenced measurements.

All configuration information is saved and reloaded between sessions, screenshots are auto-saved when file information is saved, and screen updates are automatically paused for visual analysis or printing. View Files Only mode is simplified with static displays, rather than auto-update displays used during data collection.

The Lion Precision spindle error analyser is used by universities, national laboratories, machine tool builders and manufacturers to measure spindle errors and predict spindle performance when in operation.

Mazak has introduced the Vortex II series of high-speed, simultaneous five-axis, vertical machining centres. The series is available in bridge or bed-type configuration, with axis travels up to 4,200mm x 1,400mm x 610mm in X, Y and Z and corresponding traverse rates of 20m/min (X), 32m/min (Y) and 20m/min (Z), along with a range of high-performance spindles offering up to 18,000 rev/min and 75kW (10-minute rating).

As a result, the Vortex II series is ideally suited to large aerospace components such as wing spars and mould and die work. The machine's five-axis capability is delivered through the use of an A and B axis, on which the spindle is mounted. The +/-40-degree tilting action of these two axes allows cutting tool access to all available faces of the component, while the control provided by the Mazatrol FX (or Fanuc 31i) CNC system gives the ability to cut complex contours at high feed rates.

Providing even greater versatility is the Variaxis II series of vertical machining centres with simultaneous five-axis machining capability. The most recent addition to this range is the Variaxis 630-5X II T. Capable of machining on multiple surfaces of a component by virtue of its trunnion (-120 degrees to +30 degrees of movement) and rotary table configuration (continuous 360 degrees of movement in the C axis in 0.0001 increments), the Variaxis 630-5X II T can also provide a turning solution, thanks to the use of a direct-drive motor for C axis positioning and turning.

This motor provides a turning spindle rotation of up to 1,100rev/min, and turning operations are carried out with the machine's A-axis rigidly clamped in the 0- or 90-degree position, ensuring highly efficient and accurate machining of components requiring turned features. Also providing five-axis capability is the UK-designed and built VTC-800/30SR vertical machining centre. With a 3m X axis, which works in combination with the B axis movement provided by a swivel head (+/-110 degrees), combined with an optional rotary table attachment (providing 360-degree continuous C axis rotation), this fixed-table travelling column machine offers full simultaneous five-axis machining of complex features and contours.

The swivel-head mechanism helps to reduce set-up time and increases the multi-purpose nature of the machine; meanwhile the optional Mazak rotary table can be mounted vertically or horizontally for different applications. Further versatility is provided by the ability to equip the machine with a removable central partition for pendulum machining, to maximise productivity. Feed rates of 50m/min and a powerful 35kW spindle with a maximum speed of 18,000rev/min further add to the performance of this machine tool.


Autodrill has enabled a manufacturer of oxyacetylene cutting machines to offer a hole drilling option. Because making small, accurate holes through thicker material is sometimes impossible with a laser unit, the manufacturer researched putting an automatic drill on its machine.

By drilling all the holes with a standard Autodrill machine, smaller holes are now possible through even the thickest materials due to the optional peck drill features available. The customer is also considering placing multiple spindle drill units on a single fixture, to drill many small holes at the same time. Annular cutters with a positive plug ejection system can also be used for some applications.

All the equipment is rated for continuous duty production work. Autodrill offers free application and design assistance during the quote and post-sale process. Free CAD drawings are available for all equipment. A search for Autodrill on Youtube and other video sites turns up a number of example videos.

Ideal for small- to medium-volume manufacturers of high-performance aluminium doors and windows, a cutting line from Italian machine builder, FOM, is now available in the UK from Kasto. The LT500 line is available in two versions, with either a fixed or roller-type unloading table, the latter capable of handling cut pieces of 5m and above.

Both models incorporate a cropper and step-in system to feed aluminium bars towards an NC manipulator arm with pneumatic gripper, which then advances the material up to a stop in the cutting area. Horizontal alignment of the bar, which can be up to 7m long, is by a pneumatic stop and magnetic sensor. The aluminium is clamped by manually-adjustable horizontal and vertical vices with jaws that are interchangeable to suit the profile type.

Cutting by the 500mm diameter blade of the single-head mitre saw can be at three fixed angles, 45, 90 or 135 degrees. Electrical adjustment of mitre angle from 30 to 160 degrees is an option. During the cutting process, off-cuts and swarf are removed via an internal chute. A series of blowers aims jets of air at the machining area to keep work surfaces as clear as possible of swarf.

They continue to blow after completion of the cut to finish the table-cleaning process before arrival of the next profile. Cut pieces are transferred onto a moving table with a non-scratch surface, and from there to the offload table. The 3-axis CNC system is connected to a Windows Vista PC, from where cutting order data is downloaded.

The PC has been designed to swivel towards the loading area to allow the operator to see the bar being fed through, or towards the unloading area to make it easier to use an optional labelling device. Procut software is able to create and save cutting lists, import and optimise external lists over a network or from a USB memory stick, manage profile archives containing sections and cutting parameters, and display profiles in DXF format while an order is being cut.

The lane-changing Maxtriever family of storage and retrieval machines (SRMs) offers fast delivery from, and replenishment to, more than one aisle of a warehouse. The system is designed to change aisles so that one unit has the ability to access more of a facility, increasing warehouse space availability, simplifying inventory access and reducing overhead costs while improving productivity, warehouse control, working conditions and floor space usage.

The Maxtriever series of automated Miniload and Unitload storage and retrieval machines is well suited to applications that include the buffering and storage of raw materials, work-in-process and/or finished goods and is effective in the replenishment of forward picking locations.

Efficient in handling small parts in totes to large items and car bodies, these high-speed, high-density storage and retrieval systems can replace conventional static rack or carousels to maximise vertical storage space. Lane-changing units have equal performance to lane-bound units in terms of speed, acceleration, and positioning.

The system automatically and accurately moves items for high-volume picking operations. Diamondware Autotrieve software manages Maxtriever SRMs to optimise material flow, shipping and receiving, and equipment use for continuous flow, and can be interfaced to existing host WMS software.

Esprit 2009 computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) software, created by DP Technology, will be on display at the Northwest Machine Tool Expo in Portland, Oregon, from 5-7 May.

Visitors will have access to firsthand knowledge from Esprit representatives, who will be available for questions about the the software and will be conducting one-on-one demonstrations.

Esprit 2009 places emphasis on integrated machining, and the use of milling and turning in any combination on any type of machine tool, including Swiss-turn, mill-turn and B-axis machines.

Witte Bleckede has introduced a roller-driven sandwich plate. This multi-direction drive (MDD) sandwich plate is easy to move and steer. The rollers allow simple movement and positioning, which is remote-controlled with the help of a joystick. The controls automatically align the rollers to the desired turning direction, then it is easy to rotate the sandwich plates on the spot or drive sideways.

The outer surface of the rollers ensures the floor is not damaged. The plates are equipped with powerful batteries and can run up to 120 minutes at a maximum speed of 5km/h without mains supply. With dimensions of 300 x 2000 x 5000mm, the MDD plates can carry approximately 2,000kg.

The top surface plate is machined in high-tensile aluminium with a grid for secure, accurate positioning of loads and measuring fixtures. The MDD sandwich plate is secured hydraulically to the floor in its final position during use.

Cutwel has released Korloy CBN inserts, which can be used for hard turning with no cutting fluid. Existing or standard ISO toolholders can be used to hold the inserts. Typical materials that are hard-turned are grey cast iron (180-230HB), high-temperature alloys (over 45HRC), sintered alloy, carbide roll and high-speed steel roll.

Grade KB320 is suitable for intermittent and continuous cutting on hardened steel, and Grade KB330 for heavy intermittent cutting on hardened steel. Other grades include Grade KB360 for continuous cutting on cast iron, sintered alloy, heat-resistant alloy and carbide roll, and KB420, for continuous cutting on hardened steel.

Advantages include the following: cycle times and set-ups are generally much shorter on lathes than on grinding machines; CNC lathes are generally recommended for hard turning, but manual lathes can be effective as well; hard turning requires a rigid machine with a rigid toolholder system.

CBN inserts promote faster cycle times, cut cost of machine tool investment, improve accuracy, give high-quality surface finishes, permit higher metal removal rates (two to four times faster than grinding), allow multiple operations in a single chucking, and make wet or dry cutting an option (dry cutting avoids coolant expense and disposal issues). Full technical back-up is offered on insert selection, speeds feeds and recommended depths of cut.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Jinpat Electronics has announced high-speed slip rings and fibre-optic rotary joints for electromechanical systems. The slip rings have a working speed of up to 10,000rev/min and operational life can extend to 3x109 rounds. The fIbre-optic rotary joints are designed for demanding conditions and tested to rigorous environmental and performance standards.

All materials and components have been selected to ensure the highest reliability in extreme environments, including shock and vibration, temperature, humidity and dust. They are compact and feature a variety of configuration options; custom designs are also available.

Typical applications are: robotics; vehicle turrets; radar antennas; medical and security systems; sensor platforms; material handling systems; remotely operated vehicles; fibre-optic cable reels; video surveillance and marine propulsion systems; wind turbines.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Burkert has set up an extended design-and-build service for high-tech, pre-assembled Microfluidic systems and custom-designed process control cabinets. Meeting the needs of applications such as food, beverage, process, chemical, pharmaceutical, medical/biomedical, water and oil and gas, the extended service combines process and laboratory automation, valve elements, sensors, flowmeters, water treatment systems and networked communications into single-source customised systems, which deliver higher process efficiency and higher yields with reduced waste.

Burkert's service involves complete project responsibility, from conception through design, manufacture, assembly and testing. It covers small and large production runs, extends to integration of third-party equipment, and offers the benefit of simplifying equipment designs, making them more competitive, more compact and easier to assemble.

Irwin Hodgkiss, manager of Burkert's system division, said: 'At our Stroud facility we are providing products ranging from ATEX-certified control cabinets, to Microfluidic multi-station dosing and mixing units for DNA synthesis, to systems based on our mxControl, multi-parameter controller, which fully automate and optimise water treatment and purification processes. 'Additional support is provided by Burkert's modern and extensive European Systemhaus capability, with its highly experienced engineering staff.'.

The Stacked ICCON power connector from Tyco Electronics increases power densities in high-end data and telecommunications equipment. With a current-carrying capacity of 50A in a compact footprint, the Stacked ICCON connector provides a quick-connect/disconnect function for space-constrained power delivery applications.

The stacked configuration provides two ports vertically stacked to preserve real estate on the board. ICCON connectors use Tyco's Crown Band contacts, a multi-fingered spring that provides a greater surface contact area, thus ensuring small millivolt drop, minimum heat generation and very low insertion and extraction forces.

Mating pin contacts are screw machined and feature silver plating. 'This connector provides a solution where space constraints do not permit the use of separate power and guide module components,' said Mike Blanchfield, global product manager for Tyco Electronics' power interconnects.

A choice of three pin lengths is available for sequencing.

The connector is compatible with many popular two-piece backplane connector systems.

ITT Interconnect Solutions has developed a range of XLR audio connectors designed to offer high performance and support the latest advancements in digital equipment. Suitable for a variety of digital audio cables, these XLR connectors are designed to withstand extreme use in the field, claiming to ensure excellent RFI and EMI shielding to minimise audio distortion, while shock-absorbing, rubber-insulated receptacles reduce vibration and electrical noise.

XLR connectors feature a quick disconnect latch lock and are available in configurations of two to seven positions, with reliable, precision-machined contacts and lightweight aluminium shells. Multiple plating options are available and the range is RoHS compliant.

XLR connectors are suitable for many analogue and digital applications and industries, including TV cameras, amplifiers, mixers, microphones and recording equipment; medical instruments; and industrial control devices.

Douglas Electrical Components (Deco) has introduced its Potcon line of hermetic feedthroughs, which incorporate standard connectors and/or wire harnesses in a single, fully-sealed housing. The Potcon product family features circuits that can be disconnected at the pressure bulkhead or the vacuum port plate, enabling mating and unmating.

Deco manufactures more than 1,000 varieties of Potcon connectors for vacuum, pressure and environmental containment. These feedthroughs are capable of the standard pin-to-pin or socket-to-socket configurations, but also offer a pin-to-socket design. Another feature offered by the Potcon line is the connector-to-wire configuration, which is available alongside the standard connector-to-connector and connector-to-solder cup designs.

Ed Douglas, president of Deco, said: 'By providing a mated solution that uses the same connection in the vacuum chamber as on the bench, the Potcon feedthroughs facilitate bench-top testing prior to installation in the vacuum chamber, minimising the risk of project failures that may arise. 'In vacuum-chamber applications, regular mating and unmating is common and a typical wire harness solution makes that operation very cumbersome. 'With the Potcon connectors, customers can do dry-run testing through the same connections without having the vacuum bulkhead present.

'This also saves undue wear on the actual installed wiring into the chamber, which can stay intact,' he added. Potcon feedthroughs may be specified and sealed to the housing for reliable mounting. The sealing technology employed allows customers to specify virtually any connector from any manufacturer and have it sealed in either a custom or standard fitting of their choosing. Pre-tested, vacuum outgassed and ready to install, Potcon solutions can seal Mil-C-series, circular-plastic, sub-D (including standard density and micro-D), coaxial, waterproof, thermocouple, high-current and high-voltage connectors.

Potcon feedthroughs are used in space simulation, semiconductor manufacturing and glovebox applications. Testing conducted on these feedthroughs and optional mating connector/cable sets includes helium mass spectrometry leak detection to an allowable leak rate of 1.0 x 10^-10sccm He/s, electrical hi-pot tests up to 30KV and electrical continuity.

Timken bearings from STAG Group covers the complete spectrum of aerospace requirements, including ball, cylinder, needle, taper, thrust, spindle, spherical and high-precision types. Applications are found in engines, gearboxes, airframe controls and accessories, covering turbines, power plants, helicopters and ancillary power in private, commercial and military aircraft.

Timken's expertise in metallurgical and power transmission research, combined with development of next-generation technologies, is complemented by the supply management and customer service support provided by STAG Group.

Timken bearings are designed to maximise speed, loading and operational lifetime, and the STAG supply chain ensures that both original equipment manufacture and service/repair schedules are optimised for turnaround times and for pipeline stock.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Emseal develops breakthrough 'Emshield DFR2' fire-rated, watertight, trafficable structural expansion joint system, the first UL-certified single-unit fire-rated expansion joint. Emseal, the leading manufacturer of premium sealants, expansion joints and gasket products in the U.S., has introduced a revolutionary new fire-rated expansion joint.

Emshield DFR2 is the market's first UL-certified single-unit fire-rated expansion joint that is trafficable, watertight, and accommodates high-movement. Structures that will benefit from this life-safety enhancing technology include stadiums, arenas, hospitals, schools, universities, airports, parking decks, hotels and other structures where containment of fire at structural expansion joints is required. The new hybrid system is ideal for both new and retrofit uses in construction and infrastructure applications.

Emshield DFR2, developed at the company's manufacturing plant in Canada, is now on the market in the U.S., Canada and international markets. Company officials say DFR2 is a breakthrough product that combines a number of key functions which will save architects, engineers and general contractors the expense, time and effort associated with installing a variety of products to create a fire-rated system. "Before DFR2, expansion joints required separate products to seal, bridge, and fire-rate joints," said Emseal President and CEO Lester Hensley.

"That meant separate material and installation costs as well as aesthetic and substrate configuration compromises to accommodate the mineral wool, fire-caulk, fire blankets or cover plates needed to perform the multiple functions required". "Emshield DFR2 accomplishes all these essential functions in the simple, single installation of just one product". This is one of a number of new sealant products which Emseal is introducing in early 2009.

It joins a long list of pre-formed sealants and expansion joint systems which are in wide use today throughout the world. "Once we see the need for a new product, as we did in this case, we go to work," added Hensley. "In fact, we are always looking to develop new products or improve on existing technology - that's what sets us apart". "From the beginning of our customer's design cycle we provide complete engineering and tech support - a huge plus for designers, owners and contractors, but also the industry as a whole since we look at the big picture and develop new products to meet the market's demands".

Emshield DFR2 is comprised of fire-retardant-impregnated foam pre-coated on the underside with an intumescent fire-proofing material and pre-coated on the traffic surface with highway-grade, fuel resistant silicone. It is installed into a joint gap which is primed with field-applied epoxy and finished with field-injected silicone sealant bands against the substrates. The result is a single product that can withstand vehicular and other traffic while handling thermal, traffic, wind, and seismic induced movements.

It provides waterproofing protection of adjacent building materials and occupied spaces below while also providing the life-safety protection of a 2-hour fire rating. Emshield DFR2, which stands for Deck, Fire-Rated 2-Hours, provides a fire stop at the sealed joint when that joint runs horizontally and is part of a 4-inch deep or larger concrete gap. This is a common structural situation with the decks and floors of large structures. It is UL 2079 certified, meaning that it has been tested and passed the rigorous Underwriters Laboratories expansion joint sealant cycling and fire testing.

Emshield DFR2 is the first in a comprehensive line of breakthrough, multi-function, structural expansion joint materials being released by Emseal. Additional versions for vertical walls are expected to be developed in the coming months. Emseal, established in 1959 and located in the U.S. since 1979, has provided sealant systems and technical support to many prominent stadiums and arenas, as well as numerous hospitals, airports, malls and other commercial and public sector developments.

Some of its current and recent projects include the new Yankee Stadium and Citi Field in New York, Westfield Malls, American Airlines Arena in Miami, The Empire State Building, the Lincoln Center, The CN Tower Toronto, Watergate Hotel, Greensboro, N.C.Coliseum, Houston Intercontinental Airport, the Pentagon, Nordstrom's Stores, FedEx Field Washington Redskins Stadium, Citizens Bank Philadelphia Phillies Ballpark, California Polytechnic and the Atlantic Station in Atlanta -- to name a few of the many public structure installations.

The company is the leading manufacturer of premium pre-formed sealants and expansion joint systems for the commercial construction industry and also provides gasketing applications in specialty market applications. Emseal operates out of two large factories - its recently relocated headquarters in Westborough, Mass. and its manufacturing plant in Toronto, Canada.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

For over 50 years, Entrelec® By ABB Low Voltage has been one of the leading manufacturers of terminal blocks, with products in use all over the world. All terminal blocks are manufactured using only the highest quality materials and carry UL, CSA, VDE, IEC and other worldwide approvals. Entrelec® by ABB offers space savings, industry standard DIN rail mountable terminal blocks and a variety of colors, functions and connection technologies that customers demand.

Product Offering
  • Accessories
  • Mini Terminal Blocks
  • AMS 500 Marking Systems
  • PCB Connection Devices
  • ATEX Terminal Blocks
  • PLC Wiring System
  • Blocks for 5.08mm Connections
  • Power Terminal Blocks
  • Cable Management System
  • Screw Clamp Terminal Blocks
  • Distribution Terminal Blocks
  • Specific Terminal Blocks
  • IDC (ADO) Terminal Blocks
  • Spring Clamp Terminal Blocks
  • Test Connectors
The industry’s most identifiable termination technologies are:
  • Screw Clamp technology remains the most popular in connection devices.
  • Spring Clamp technology is a fast growing standard in screw-less connection.
  • IDC (insulation displacement connection) technology is the newest, fastest, and most innovative of screw-less connections.
In addition to general purpose terminal blocks, Entrelec® by ABB offers definite purpose products such as Distribution, 5.08mm connection, Power, Mini, ATEX , and Railway terminal blocks to satisfy the specialty needs of their customers. Terminal Blocks entrelec® by ABB's dedication to its customers is proven by offering FREE software to assist in rail design and operating a 24 hour hotline for orders.

Markets and applications include:
  • Process Control
  • Large and small panel building
  • Machine Tool
  • Energy/Utility
  • Railway/Transport
  • Chemical/Petrochemical
  • HVAC
  • Ship Building
  • Building Automation
  • Instrumentation
  • Utilities
  • Automobile

Schott Systeme has launched an online video demonstration of its latest freeform feature recognition tools. Designed specifically with mould and model makers in mind, these tools help overcome the limitations of current CAM feature recognition packages, whereby only prismatic items such as pockets and holes are extracted from a model. Schott Systeme's CAD/CAM solution 'Pictures by PC' is able to examine and extract geometry for machining of far greater complexity.

By combining these enhanced recognition tools with the software's latest surface modelling capabilities, users are able to prepare models for machining in a greatly reduced timeframe. Citing mouldtool design as a typical example, all freeform holes on a model, such as those created to house ejector pins, can automatically be covered in a single click, preventing tooling during finishing operations from disappearing into the holes.

Complex features such as the slots created by electrodes can also be automatically covered using the software's advanced surfacing function, again improving finishing operations, but also removing the need to create complex and time-consuming surface patches, as can often be the case with mid-range CAD modellers.

Tapered pocket side walls requiring five-axis 'swarf cutting', characteristic of aerospace components, and freeform chamfers to be finished using five-axis 'end mill' techniques, are all features that can be instantly extracted from a 3D CAD model.

Helping to identify areas that require rest machining, actual radius surfaces within a given size range are automatically identified and extracted for re-machining. Similar tools also allow the selection of 'chained' radius faces, so entire freeform filleted features can be chosen in a single click.

Freeform models may often include numerous planar faces that require the application of normal facing operations. Here, the software searches for and extracts all planar faces on a freeform model, and machines them as individual 2.5D pockets, taking into account at all times the actual 3D model. This removes the possibility of gauging and tool collisions.

Sames has developed the PPH 707-SB paint sprayer, which is intended for automakers and is equipped with a high-speed turbine (HST). This turbine enables paint to be applied at high flow rates (up to 1,000cc/min), thereby increasing productivity. The use of the HST also reduces the number of robots needed, as each robot is able to work faster.

This technology can be combined with the 'bowl/bowl' process, resulting in perfect colour and very high paint transfer performance, according to the company. This is claimed to guarantee higher quality and competitiveness for Mercedes, Renault and GM.

As a result of its transfer efficiency (the ratio between the amount of product actually applied to the part and the total amount of product used), the PPH 707-SB sprayer also reduces the amount of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by paints.

Sensgard has introduced a hardhat adaptor that allows workers to use Sensgard hearing protection devices. The adaptor clips to the back of virtually any hardhat and is designed for use with either the Sensgard SG 26 or SG 31 hearing protection model. The system, combining either model with the hardhat adaptor, weighs less than two ounces (57g), but both components are rugged and durable, even in hot and cold temperature extremes.

The SG26 and the SG31 have noise-reduction ratings of 26 and 31 decibels respectively, making the Sensgard system suitable for use in extreme-noise environments, including construction, manufacturing, energy/utility/nuclear power plants, refineries and mining operations. The SG 26 and the SG31 incorporate patented ZEM technology, which uses the mechanical energy of sound waves instead of electronics to minimise sound before it reaches the ears.

The devices provide consistent protection without distortion across all frequencies. The wearer is fully protected from harmful noise but can still discern speech and other important ambient sounds. They cost significantly less than ear muffs and are much more cost effective in day-to-day use than ear plugs. Glasses and safety goggles will not compromise the product fit or performance. The lightweight hearing protection device and the adaptor are claimed to be comfortable to wear, even in hot, humid environments.

A feature of Kemppi's three-phase Mastertig MLS 3000 and 3003 AC/DC welding systems is the Microtack function, available on the optional ACX control panel. This function has been specifically developed to tack weld carbon, stainless steel and titanium thin sheet components up to around 4mm thickness. Microtack welding resembles spot welding in that it uses a high current pulse to create a low heat input to weld thin sheet materials and thin sheet to thicker sheet materials.

This method of TIG welding is made possible by the control technology used in the Kemppi power source, which creates a tailored current pulse that is efficient and fast, a matter of a few dozen milliseconds to create the low heat input. The result is a clean, small tack weld, which is similar to a laser weld in appearance and characteristics, resulting in lower risks in burn. Although Microtack welding is very fast and easy to use, it does not use any filler material and the heat input is low, so there is little tolerance for gaps, therefore precise joint preparation and fit up is necessary.

For example, for butt tacking a material thickness of 2mm the gap must be less than 0.2mm. This function can be especially useful for thin material welding applications in the chemical, process, oil and gas industries as well as the pharmaceutical industry and food processing equipment manufacturing. Other features of this function are minimum material deformation due to the low heat input, consistent small tacks, which cannot be detected after the seam has been welded, and the ability to be used with mechanised TIG welding.

Microtack welding can also speed up the tack welding of thin gauge beams, which could be up to 13m long and tacks every 30mm with the number of welds being as high as 2,000, any increases in welding speeds can have a significant impact on reducing production costs. The Microtack function is available on the ACX control panel, which has all the features of the ACS basic panel for TIG welding, plus long pulse and synergic pulse functions.

The 4T Log function makes it easier to start and stop welding; Minilog enables the welder to switch between two current levels during welding by pressing the torch switch; a memory function stores previously used settings; and memory channels to store user-specific settings.

Dome-loaded 797 LE-HD gas-controlled pressure regulators from Witt can provide an economic and safe solution to ensure gas cutting systems receive a constant gas supply, according to the manufacturer. The company said this system of gas regulation is more economical than using a full electronic control system. In one application the three inlet lines for oxygen and propane are supplied via Witt pressure regulators to optimise the automatic gas supply.

The gas control was regulated using proportional valves with changes in the gas pressure being adjusted by pressure changes, thereby controlling the cutting process. Witt pressure regulators can be used for numerous applications with a range of flow rates and gases. They are used as a primary pressure regulator, which can be installed in any orientation, in gas supply pipeline systems to ensure a consistent stable pressure up to a flow of 2300m3/h and are independent of any inlet pressure fluctuations in the gas supplies, including gas withdrawals.

They are also suitable for use in shipyards, chemical processing plants, offshore and diving vessels, glass making as well as steel making and foundry applications. Other features include integrated pilot pressure and pressure gauge connections as well as being able to centrally regulate several gas supplies to the same working pressure, while the compact design enables them be installed in confined spaces. The maximum pre-pressure for the 737LE-HD is 240 bar with a regulating range from 2-45 bar.

Mahr Federal has extended the capability of its MMQ Formtester line with the MMQ 200 Formtester, optimised for measuring cylindricity and other deviations of form and position. Equipped with Mahr's Easyform Version 3 Software, the MMQ 200 is said to be compact, fast and easy to learn and operate. It is suitable for use in metrology laboratories or on the shop floor. Pat Nugent, vice-president of metrology systems for Mahr Federal, said: 'The unit can be operated either by touch screen or by a keypad built right into the machine base.

'Using Easyform, no programming language is required for operation. 'Multi-feature measurement routines can be easily set up and saved and measurement operations are fast and virtually automatic.' EasyForm's teach-in mode remembers each step taken and can combine steps to perform multi-feature measurements. Up to 32 measuring routines can be saved for automatic operation via function keys. For example, a roundness measurement can be taken in two steps.

Measurement results are immediately displayed on the screen, including 3D representation, with colour or grid lines providing an interactive graphic preview. Results can be printed, saved in file formats such as PDF or exported for analysis in other software packages. This ease of operation makes the MMQ 200 suitable for use by machine operators right in production areas where immediate measurements can minimise scrap, save time and reduce production costs.

Optimised for the measurement of cylindricity through rotational table axis and vertical-axis integration, the MMQ 200 can also perform a range of ISO and/or ASME form checks. In particular, it carries out roundness, straightness, flatness (from a polar trace), parallelism, concentricity, coaxiality, run-out, total run-out, taper, perpendicularity, angularity, and angle sector (roundness, flatness, run-out) checks.

Key features include: three motorised axes, with both measuring axes (C and Z) optimised for high precision; computer and graphic-assisted test piece alignment on the manual tilting and centring table; a universal T20W test probe with a 2mm working range, stroke limitation and a mechanical probe zenith setting for high-precision measurements; Easyform measuring, control and evaluation software; a Pentium-class PC using Windows XP Professional; and a 15in (38cm) touch-screen monitor.

The MMQ 200 requires no outside air supply. Mahr Federal, a member of the Mahr Group, provides dimensional measurement solutions. The ISO 9001:2000-certified company, headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island, manufactures and markets a variety of dimensional metrology products. Mahr Federal's calibration system is accredited to ISO 17025 NVLAP Lab Code 200605-0.

Automated Packaging Systems (APS) is offering the option to UK businesses to hire - rather than buy - automated bagging and void fill solutions. The company has joined forces with nationwide tool and equipment provider HSS Hire to offer exclusive short- and long-term hire of its Freespace bagging system and Airpouch void fill system. The PS 125 Freespace is designed for low- to mid-volume operations.

It is said to be highly productive and flexible and has been adapted for a range of applications, from splitting bulk-purchase fittings and craft items to dispatching goods from offices. Capable of operating at speeds up to 25 bags per minute, it weighs less than 40kg and has a footprint of 550mm x 480mm, which means that it can be used in small spaces. The quiet, all-electric design does not require compressed air.

Freespace makes it possible for one person to sort and bag products at between four and six times their normal operating rate in a like-for-like bagging scenario, saving time and cutting the cost of bought-in labour. The bags are available in a range of sizes, from postcard to pillowcase. In addition, HSS Hire will also offer Airpouch: APS's desktop void-fill system that provides an immediate, lightweight and greener source of reprocessed protective packaging cushions.

Airpouch is claimed to be fast and simple to use, providing protective air-filled cushions at a rate of 15 linear metres per minute - enough to fill a family car every 10 minutes. The cushions offer protection and padding and are suitable for components, spare parts, CDs, books, electronics, pharmaceuticals and electrical items. Airpouch is used in mail-order centres and fulfilment houses, as well as for parts distribution, and will be available for hire on a weekly basis.

Komax Systems has introduced a modular automatic assembly system that can be used initially for low-volume pre-production runs and that can later be expanded into high-volume systems. The company, which is located in Switzerland, initially developed its KSPilot to answer a problem for medical-device manufacturers. In the KSPilot system, a chassis uses a free work pallet loop to give a three-second cycling rate.

Assembly tooling can be cam driven, pneumatically operated or operated under numerical control (NC). Tooling/assembly operations can be under one second. All tooling has common mechanical, electrical and software interfaces with Komax Systems's high-speed, cam-driven, inline and rotary tooling platforms. The platforms are portable and, once proven out on the KSPilot line, can be removed and inserted into a high-volume production line.

According to the company, the system allows automatic assemblies to be tried, proven out and prepared for use in a high-speed assembly line during the early stages of a product assembly's development. In overall concept, the KSPilot either allows low-volume pre-production or 'pilot' production runs for assembly processes, which can be later added to an existing high-volume production assembly line. Alternatively, a developed cell can be readily expanded into a medium- or high-production system based on semi-automatic/manual or completely automatic production.

Work pallet transport in the systems uses a plastics chain that can be readily shortened or extended. All devices and work-holding and transfer systems, including robotic systems, can be readily reconfigured as work requirements change.

Stellram has developed a drilling tool design, which has boosted productivity and has reduced costs at Young Touchstone, a manufacturer of industrial heat exchangers. Stellram Hardcore technology has transformed a machining operation at the company's plant in Tennessee, US, by doubling the average number of holes achieved per drill and delivering a 59 per cent saving on tool costs.

Young Touchstone, part of Wabtec Corporation, turned to Stellram for help on its project, which involved drilling approximately 1,000 holes, 13mm x 16mm deep, in 1,018 CR steel plates used for a variety of cooling applications. Patrick Cann, ATI Stellram's solid carbide specialist, said: 'The challenge was to identify areas for improvement that would help increase productivity and decrease tool costs.

'Under the existing operation, the drill cost per hole was high and tool life varied greatly. 'The Stellram product development team recommended the use of Hardcore technology drills as part of a series of changes designed to further improve the control of cutting conditions and tool life. 'A feed and speed was established that not only gave the required production rate, but also longer tool life.

'As the tool life was substantially increased, the average holes per drill increased from 15,000 to 30,000 and, as a consequence, the cost per hole was also reduced, achieving a saving of 59 per cent compared to the previous method,' he added.

Chad Copeland, ATI Stellram's sales engineer, said that the patented Hardcore technology combines two optimum grades of carbide in one tool, removing the problems usually associated with switching between tools with different carbide grades. He said: 'This new technology helps extend tool life, eliminate chipping and resolve durability or production speed issues.

'While one of the carbide grades is designed to withstand the high speed of the tool's outer diameter, the robust characteristics of the other grade easily handle the slow speed of the tool centre,' added Copeland. Hardcore drills are available in sizes ranging from 3mm to 16mm in diameter and capacities up to five times the diameter.

Cutwel has introduced the NC9025 carbide turning grade for machining stainless steel, heat-resistant super alloy, cast iron and sticky steels.

Features are: a toughened substrate to enhance notch wear resistance; CVD low-friction coating technology, which helps decrease built-up edge for better surface finish and machining accuracy; negative and positive type inserts; choice of insert radius for roughing and finishing; wide range of insert chip breakers; application cutting area P30-P40: steel 80-260m/min, M25-M35: stainless steel 80-20m/min; K20-K30: cast iron 130-240m/min; S20-S30: heat-resistant super alloy 20-60m/min; 50-75 per cent increase in tool life; better surface finish and tighter tolerance of machined parts.

Full technical back-up is offered on insert and chip breaker selection, speeds feeds and recommended depths of cut.

Lincoln Electric has teamed up with custom car designer Chip Foose to create Vista Hemisfear, an auto-darkening welding helmet inspired by Foose's Hemisfear hot rod. The Vista Hemisfear is the company's first using a lightweight shell design, bringing the total helmet weight to 567g or less depending on configuration. All Vista helmets feature: solar-powered auto-darkening, eliminating operator error and alkaline corrosion; grind and TIG modes, as well as variable delay settings for greater operator control; four independent arc sensors to ensure reliability; different view sizes for user preferences.

The complete series of Vista helmets also includes various colours and graphic designs, including textured black, Patriot, Nascar heavy metal, Red Rod and SurfRod. Every helmet includes a Personal-Pak with a soft helmet bag with zip-up pocket, a graphic Lincoln bandana and an owner ID label. Lincoln Electric's complete line of Vista auto-darkening helmets is available at local welding distributors.

Kontron intends to design with Octeon II processors from Cavium Networks, a provider of semiconductor products that allow intelligent processing. Clients will be able to upgrade their systems with the highest packet processor performance, unprecedented scalability and added virtualisation functionalities, to support their multiple network infrastructure equipment such as media gateway- and wireless base station-type applications.

These multi-core processing units will provide much more flexibility in xTCA platforms, and create a broader range of target applications using COTS components in the network. Multiple 10GbE I/O capability combined with DDR3 memory bandwidth will enable system designs for LTE and other core network elements. SRIO is supported in the Octeon II CN63XX, so this type of architecture will also allow use in combination with other DSP-intensive applications in MicroTCA platforms.

The Cavium Networks Octeon II internet application processor (IAP) family is designed for hypernetworks serving enterprises, data centres, and access and service providers, which require support for converged data, voice and video. Octeon II applications include switches, routers, appliances, equipment for 3G, Wimax, LTE, wireless LAN, and unified storage systems and adapters. The Octeon II family integrates 1 to 32 MIPS64 cores, up to 75 application acceleration engines for quality of service, packet processing, TCP, compression, encryption, RAID, de-duplication and regular expression processing, up to 400Gbytes/s of DDR3 memory bandwidth, and up to 100Gbytes/s of network connectivity, while consuming only 2W to 60W across the entire family.

Kontron currently offers two modules: the Kontron AM4204 with four 1GbE ports to the front and software-configurable interfaces to the fabric side (PCIe, four 1GbE or XAUI), and the Kontron AM4220 with two 10GbE to the front and PCIe to the fabric side. Each one is designed with Octeon Plus CN5650 packet processors with 12 64-bit MIPS cores supporting up to 14.4 billion MIPS64 instructions per second (14.4 GOPS). They are designed with high-density, high-bandwidth serial IO technology, and are optimised for layer 4 to layer 7 data and security processing for 3G/4G BTS, RNC, xGSN and media gateway applications.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Aluflash, Z-Led's new alternative to lead flashing, has attained the best fire rating performance available. The product has been given an 'AA' fire rating by Bodycote Warrington, enabling unrestricted use regardless of proximity to adjacent buildings, and ensuring compliance with Building Regulation Part B. Z-Led- one of the UK's leading suppliers of solutions to prevent water ingress into buildings- believes Aluflash is the first aluminium flashing on the market to achieve the certification.

Aluflash can be used wherever lead flashing would traditionally be employed- and beyond: its non-toxic construction means it is suitable for use with rainwater harvesting installations, and prevents oxidisation over time. The product uses a combination of corrosion-resistant aluminium with a solvent lacquer coloured surface and self-adhesive butyl backing, to give the most viable alternative to traditional lead flashing. Z-Led has developed two unique surface finishes for Aluflash, depending on the application.

The embossed surface is designed for applications requiring less complex shapes, such as pitched roof valleys, soakers and box gutters. The unique cross-corrugated surface is designed for use where the flashing has to be moulded over and around complex shapes such as profiled roof tiles and corner junctions, and allows the Aluflash to be dressed in more than one direction. A 100% recyclable polymer 'release' backing sheet helps keep the self adhesive butyl layer clean until required, ensuring a secure bond. AluFlash is unaffected by temperature, can be laid effectively in hot or cold conditions and is compatible with all common roof materials- concrete, clay, slate and metal.

The material is supplied in manageable 5m rolls, in widths from 150mm- 600mm in 50mm increments, minimising wastage and time spent cutting to fit. It does not require specialist tools or skills to install. The surface finish can be simply wiped clean to remove site dirt and debris such as cement mortar, and comes in a traditional 'lead grey' to compliment the building aesthetics. Site installation time and safety is therefore significantly improved. Z-Led commercial manager Kelly Phipps observes, "Building Regulation Part B requires that roofs, or part of a roof, are fire rated, and roof coverings play a key role in preventing the spread of fire from one property to another simply by being non combustible".

"It is therefore a major benefit to be sure that even the flashing achieves an appropriate fire rating, and will not burn: to our knowledge, Aluflash is the only lead flashing alternative to have attained such classification". Z-Led AluFlash complements the core range of Z-Led polypropylene cavity trays which are claimed to be virtually indestructible, its range of gas and damp barrier membranes, cavity closers, acoustic fire barriers and the Capawal high performance coping system which is designed to provide an attractive, weather-resistant finish to parapet walls.

The company, part of the Building Product Design Group, invests in a continuous programme of research and development to bring to market innovative yet practical products in line with changing requirements.

Atmos to launch Combinair, a low cost route to level 3 and 4 of the code for sustainable homes, at this year's Greenbuild. Atmos Heating Systems, the low carbon heating specialist, unveils the ground breaking Combinair on Stand A1 at this year's Greenbuild, 17-18 June 2009, Manchester Central (formerly GMEX), Manchester. Boasting an efficiency of 300-400%, the revolutionary Combinair integrates a condensing gas combi boiler with an air source heat pump (ASHP) into a single unit. Designed to reduce CO2 emissions the unit offers a low cost route to achieving Code Levels 3 and 4 of the Code for Sustainable Homes.

To gain Level 3 of the Code, a 25% reduction in CO2 emissions is needed, which can be achieved in a low energy house with the Combinair. This innovative ASHP combines the benefits of a heat pump with mechanical heat recovery ventilation in one unit. The Combinair draws warm air from the house mechanical extract ventilation system, together with outside air. Recovering heat from the extract air, and using only 655 Watts of electrical energy, the unit pumps up to 3kW of heat energy back into the central heating system, to achieve its amazing high efficiency. When the central heating demand exceeds 3kW, the high efficiency condensing boiler (90% Sedbuk A) cuts in to provide the extra heat demand.

Meanwhile, the weather compensating control system keeps the central heating flow temperature as low as possible, and thereby maximizes the efficiency of both the heat pump and the boiler. The system operates best with underfloor heating, but can also be used with low temperature radiators, or a combination of both. Hot water is supplied by the condensing gas combi boiler, which provides a generous 12 litres/min at 35 deg C temp rise from its 30kW power output. To achieve Level 4 of the Code, a 44% reduction in CO2 emissions is required. This can be achieved by adding the Atmos MonoSolar hot water system, which fits neatly beneath the Combinair to form a Code 4 packaged solution.

The Solar Combinair benefits from all the features and efficiency of the Combinair with the added benefit of providing 60% of the annual hot water required for an average two/three person house from a renewable heat source - the sun. "Air source heat pumps generally have a lower efficiency than ground source heat pumps, because the average seasonal air temperature is lower than the ground. However, the Combinair, takes all the warm house extract air, mixes it with the outdoor air, so that the average input air temperature is higher, resulting in a higher efficiency of 300-400% similar to a ground source heat pump," explains John Thomason, General Manager of Atmos Heating Systems".

In addition, Atmos will showcase its low carbon SolarCombi system, which can cut fuel costs and CO2 emissions by 50% compared to conventional gas heating systems. The SolarCombi presents two installation options, bringing together the Atmos MonoSolar drain-back system with either the Atmos Inter or Multi range of high efficiency condensing gas boilers. The MonoSolar features a 100 litre insulated thermal storage tank, complete with an integral copper tube heat exchanger, energy-saving variable speed pump and electronic control module, and a drain back solar collector.

Storage tank water circulates around the solar collector, absorbing heat from the sun which is transferred via the heat exchanger to the mains hot tap water to offer savings of up to 1,500 kWh of gas energy per year. The MonoSolar system includes a simple non-electric diverter valve, when the tank is above 45 deg C, the diverter valve activates to bypass the boiler and send water straight to the tap, via a thermostatic mixing valve for safety. This system reduces the boiler's operational time and hence reduces gas consumption. When the tank water is below 45 deg C the diverter valve sends the pre-heated water through the boiler to top it up to 60 deg C, or whatever the hot water temperature setting is on the boiler.

With the Inter and Multi condensing technology saving 35%, and the MonoSolar operation cutting energy consumption and costs by a further 15%, combined SolarCombi operation will save up to 50% in fuel costs, usage and related CO2 emissions. As a closed circuit system, the MonoSolar is virtually maintenance free. Because of the low volume of secondary water, and the stored hot water transfers heat through the copper pipe heat exchanger, there is no risk of legionella.

Meanwhile, because the drain back system empties the solar collector, there is no risk of overheating or freezing. Instead of an expansion vessel, the tank incorporates an air gap, and water automatically flows back into the tank's empty discharge space from the collector, eliminating the need for glycol antifreeze in the system.

New 'ultra-efficient' Turbomiser Mark 2 chiller, developed by Klima-Therm and Cool-Therm, cuts power bills by up to 50 per cent. A new type of ultra-efficient chiller, now being launched simultaneously in the UK and across Europe, delivers unprecedented energy savings for end users and takes carbon reduction into new territory for the industry. The super-frugal machine, Turbomiser II, is the fruit of a two-year evelopment programme by pioneering Italian manufacturer Geoclima and UK companies Klima-Therm and Cool-Therm.

It has been heralded as "probably the most efficient HFC-based air-cooled chiller in the world." It can achieve EERs of 10 and above without the need for additional free-cooling circuits and associated glycol, which can prove expensive and is not favoured in many applications. This saves both on initial cost and ongoing pump energy. Building on the success of the first generation Turbomiser, which itself set a new standard for efficiency, the second generation Turbomiser II takes performance into new territory.

The Turbomiser II chiller can reduce end users' power bills by between 30 and 50 per cent - while at the same time dramatically cutting carbon emissions. On some applications, the saving can cut pay-back time to less than a year. As a result of its innovative design, the machine requires 30 per cent less refrigerant than comparable conventional chillers, reducing servicing costs and potential environmental damage from large-scale leakage. Roberto Mallozzi, managing director of London-based Klima-Therm, said: "Given the pressure on end users to cut energy bills and emissions, this new chiller effectively enables clients to "future-proof" their businesses".

"It is the solution people have been looking for". Ken Strong, managing director of Bristol-based Cool-Therm, said: "The energy performance is staggering". "These kind of savings are unheard of with conventional technology, and it gives end users a decisive advantage in terms of running costs". "And the savings go on accumulating throughout the life of the plant". The chiller uses a combination of high efficiency components and technologies, combined with a highly sophisticated adaptive control system that integrates and optimises performance.

Key design features include:.

* Micro-channel aluminium condensers, that reduce refrigerant charge while increasing the effectiveness of heat exchange.

* Flooded evaporators that ensure optimum energy transfer between refrigerant and water.

* Inverter-controlled Turbocor compressors whose output can be precisely matched to load.

* Use of a Liquid Pressure Amplification (LPA) system that significantly increases thermodynamic efficiency across the chiller's operating range.

An important aspect of the control philosophy is that the system is designed to operate with a floating head pressure, providing opportunities for savings not available to conventional designs. Unlike standard chillers whose head pressure is fixed, the Turbomiser II chiller constantly self-regulates and optimises its performance in response to ambient conditions and load. This is achieved with the use of the 1kW LPA system, under the control of some highly sophisticated electronics. This effectively increases capacity at all condensing temperatures, but has greatest effect at lower temperatures.

As a result, it can deliver refrigerant many times more efficiently than a compressor. Another key to the chiller's ultra-low energy consumption is the fact that the compressor does not have to run constantly to maintain a fixed head pressure. By using the LPA system at lower ambient temperatures the compressor(s) can be switched off, while the LPA pump circulates refrigerant around the system. This glycol-free alternative to conventional free-cooling is highly efficient, and dramatically reduces energy consumption while maintaining refrigeration performance.

A secondary benefit of the reduced compressor run-time is extended plant life. With the low-power LPA system taking the load, the compressor does not have to work so hard or for so long, reducing wear and the likelihood of breakdown. As a result of its innovative design, the Turbomiser II can halve the energy costs compared with a conventional screw-based machine, according to the companies behind it. On many applications, this can cut payback time to less than one year. A first generation Turbocor chiller recently installed at The Dorchester in London is saving the end user GBP10,000 a month in energy costs.

The Turbomiser II takes this performance to a higher level still. It is being targeted at building owner-occupiers for whom rising power bills and the need to cut carbon emissions are key factors in buying decisions. It is expected that the Turbomiser II will prove a compelling choice for those having to replace aging, inefficient machines running on R22. The chiller is available in capacities from 250kW to 1.5MW, and can be applied in most commercial and industrial applications. It is ideal for data centres, large retail developments and deep plan buildings that have a constant base load. Hospitals and hotels with their need for all-year-round cooling, are also excellent applications.

Pepperl+Fuchs has introduced the DM5XX Series industrial LCD monitors designed to deliver reliable operation and long life in harsh application environments, and/or continuous duty operation. The monitors deliver a high MTBF at over 550,000 hours and are available as general-purpose displays or as a UL listed Class I/Div 2 device. They come in a variety of mounting styles and can be combined with a Pepperl+Fuchs Bebco EPS purge system for Class I/Div 1 hazardous environment mounting.

Touch-screen options are also available. DM5XX flat-panel monitors are available in 10in, 12in, 15in, 18in, 19in and 20in sizes, and are rated for use in temperatures ranging from -10C to 55C. They accept standard VGA or NTSC inputs from a PC or video camera source. They can multi-sync to any standard video mode from 640 x 480 to 1600 x 1200 at scan rates from 60 to 75Hz, without image distortion or flicker. The DM5XX are 12V DC powered displays, powered from an external power supply to keep heat away from the monitor, maximising reliability and operating life.

This range of rugged flat-panel monitors uses only industrial grade components. No consumer grade electronics are implemented in the product. Additional attributes that make up the industrial flat panel display solution include: heavier gauge metal and wiring; corrosion protection; internal bulkhead wiring; gold plating; latching/tie downs; better shock/vibration specs; shock-absorbing gaskets; higher temperature and humidity specs; brighter back lamps (up to 500 nits) and wider viewing angles; and longevity/support/replaceable back lamps.

Pepperl+Fuchs industrial grade monitors are available with an optional resistive touch screen. This is a UL Listed, five-wire resistive touch screen suitable for general purpose and ex-hazardous Class I/Div 2 environments. A resistive touch screen provides mouse emulation by applying a small amount of pressure on the desired location of the monitor screen. This allows the operator to use a finger, glove, stylus, and so on to initiate the touch-screen functionality. There is also a self-calibration tool for precise adjustments.

For PC interface, the touch screens have both a USB and serial output to be connected to the host PC. Accessories available for these industrial flat panel monitors include: 12V DC power supplies; 12V DC power supplies for Class I/Div 2 applications; five-pin DIN connectors cables for power; analogue video cables (VGA); USB cables for touch-screen interface; serial cables for touch-screen interface; and touch-screen protector overlays.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Endress And Hauser is offering the Micropilot M FMR245 radar for accurate and reliable level monitoring of solid and liquid applications. Suitable for continuous non-contact level monitoring, the radar is claimed to deliver high measurement integrity even in demanding applications involving dust, build-up formation and aggressive or corrosive environments.

Signal performance has been enhanced, further extending the application scope of this 26Hz level radar. In addition to the process seal, the device features an optional glass gas-tight feed-through between the antenna and the electronics, which stops toxic or aggressive media penetrating the electronics compartment, guaranteeing optimum safety in extreme conditions, according to the company. Its improved antenna design enables applications up to 200C.

Its one-piece solid PTFE antenna is adapted to the signal, which inhibits hollow spaces or joints, thus preventing condensation within the antenna and improving process reliability. Offering a SIL2 rating for added process safety, the two-wire technology is said to facilitate implementation into existing systems, making the Micropilot M FMR245 a cost-effective, alternative solution to differential pressure and displacers. It is Hart and Profibus PA compatible and features a menu-driven alphanumeric display.

Inmoco has introduced two robust Servotecnica commercial slip rings that offer the flexibility for up to 96 connections (216 upon demand). They also feature high voltage/current operation, low temperature working down to -40C and the ability to operate at speeds up to 800rpm. The new SRH 60135 and SRH 70155 series slip rings are designed for use in any system requiring the transmission of electrical and/or power signals to an intermittently or continuously rotating shaft.

This typically includes equipment such as video systems, robots and downhole inspection equipment, manufacturing and process control equipment, filling machines, medical equipment and packaging machines. Both series of SRH slip rings are available in many standard configurations; offer a high rating life of 10 (to the power of seven) revolutions (nominal speed 250rpm); and the facility of from six to 96 circuits, with up to 216 as an option. Their reduced size - the SRH 60135 is the smaller of the two - allows installation into compact systems, while a combination of low friction torque, high insulation resistance and a tough ABS housing guarantees high operating reliability and long life.

The design of the SRH series slip rings allows low peripheral-speed between brushes and rings, as well as reduced dynamic imbalance; the combination of these factors results in low wear. Noble metals and a new technology allow multiple contact points between bushes and ring, which reduces electrical noise and interference between circuits. All of these features make the SRH series suited to the transmission of critical signals, such as high-frequency signals (for example video and fieldbuses), low currents and voltages (strain gauges, thermocouples and measuring equipment).

Both SRH series are available for use with 600V AC/V DC voltages; they are IP51 protected (IP65 optional) against the ingress of dust and dripping water and offer an operating temperature range of -40C to +80C. The SRH series can be easily customised upon demand, in terms of connector types and cables, and also the number of circuits available from the SRH units.

The CLPA (CC-Link Partners Association) has published a catalogue detailing an array of CC-Link products from a host of different vendors. CC-Link is an open fieldbus for control and communications that allows devices from many suppliers to be directly integrated into a control system. The catalogue is suitable for anyone building control networks around the CC-Link open fieldbus.

It provides technical details and application suggestions for the various versions, including CC-Link/LT (Lite), CC-Link Safety and CC-Link IE (Industrial Ethernet), as well as the standard offering. The catalogue provides full information on CC-Link master products, slave products and peripheral devices. It includes PLCs, I/O, HMIs, drives, sensors, process devices, indicators, solenoid valves and many others, including gateway products to simplify integration into wider automation systems.

All products are conformance tested to ensure compliance with CC-Link standards, allowing users to source best of breed products from different vendors with complete confidence. Nodes of CC-Link sold per annum now exceed 1,000,000, and sales of CC-Link products are increasing across Europe. CC-Link offers industrial Ethernet, fieldbus, safety-specific and bit-bus level options.

Ideal Industries has introduced the 61-797 Digital Insulation Meter, a rugged, industrial-grade tester designed for commissioning, routine troubleshooting and preventive maintenance. Tony Kumeta, general European manager of Ideal Industries (UK), said: 'The periodic testing of insulation for signs of deterioration will spot breakdowns in electrical systems, generators, switchgears and motor windings before failure occurs.

'More importantly, insulation testing can prevent the dangerous occurrence of short circuits or short to grounds.' The portable 61-797 can withstand the rigours of heavy commercial and industrial usage. Using test leads, the technician can quickly determine the integrity of insulation in new and existing wiring by identifying capacitive, absorption and leakage current at multiple test voltages (50, 100, 250, 500 and 1000V) and resistance up to 20G Ohms.

The 61-797 can also measure earth-bond resistance to assure verification of the continuity of the protective bonding. It automatically senses and displays AC/DC voltage to 600V and calculates the polarisation index (PI) and dielectric absorption ratio (DAR). Insulation testing is most effective when it is part of a scheduled maintenance programme. Repetitive testing is made easier with the 61-797's straightforward pass/fail function and its internal storage of values.

It also features twist-on alligator clips that fit over the test leads and a remote test-button for two-handed operation. The 61-797 was designed with a 600V Cat IV overvoltage rating and will safely disable itself if connected to a live circuit exceeding 30V. A live voltage hazard indictor is also prominently displayed on the front panel to warn the technician before use on an energised circuit.

Once testing is complete, the 61-797 automatically discharges capacitive voltage that may be a shock hazard from the equipment under test. The 61-797 comes with a carrying case, test leads and batteries.

Pepperl+Fuchs has introduced the DM5XX Series industrial LCD monitors designed to deliver reliable operation and long life in harsh application environments, and/or continuous duty operation. The monitors deliver a high MTBF at over 550,000 hours and are available as general-purpose displays or as a UL listed Class I/Div 2 device. They come in a variety of mounting styles and can be combined with a Pepperl+Fuchs Bebco EPS purge system for Class I/Div 1 hazardous environment mounting.

Touch-screen options are also available. DM5XX flat-panel monitors are available in 10in, 12in, 15in, 18in, 19in and 20in sizes, and are rated for use in temperatures ranging from -10C to 55C. They accept standard VGA or NTSC inputs from a PC or video camera source. They can multi-sync to any standard video mode from 640 x 480 to 1600 x 1200 at scan rates from 60 to 75Hz, without image distortion or flicker. The DM5XX are 12V DC powered displays, powered from an external power supply to keep heat away from the monitor, maximising reliability and operating life.

This range of rugged flat-panel monitors uses only industrial grade components. No consumer grade electronics are implemented in the product. Additional attributes that make up the industrial flat panel display solution include: heavier gauge metal and wiring; corrosion protection; internal bulkhead wiring; gold plating; latching/tie downs; better shock/vibration specs; shock-absorbing gaskets; higher temperature and humidity specs; brighter back lamps (up to 500 nits) and wider viewing angles; and longevity/support/replaceable back lamps.

Pepperl+Fuchs industrial grade monitors are available with an optional resistive touch screen. This is a UL Listed, five-wire resistive touch screen suitable for general purpose and ex-hazardous Class I/Div 2 environments. A resistive touch screen provides mouse emulation by applying a small amount of pressure on the desired location of the monitor screen. This allows the operator to use a finger, glove, stylus, and so on to initiate the touch-screen functionality. There is also a self-calibration tool for precise adjustments.

For PC interface, the touch screens have both a USB and serial output to be connected to the host PC. Accessories available for these industrial flat panel monitors include: 12V DC power supplies; 12V DC power supplies for Class I/Div 2 applications; five-pin DIN connectors cables for power; analogue video cables (VGA); USB cables for touch-screen interface; serial cables for touch-screen interface; and touch-screen protector overlays.